Aug
14

I’ve been super lazy about packing my lunches lately. Probably because they have a Chipotle type line at the work where I basically get a chicken taco salad every single day. ALRIGHT FINE, I’ll admit that I totally get the salad because it comes with crunchy, salty tortilla chips and loads of guac.

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Jul
11

Why are burgers so freakin’ delicious? I’m serious. Turkey burgers, chicken burgers, bites of Tony’s heart-attack double bacon burgers. Oh and isn’t it just convenient that they are constantly paired with the other most addictive food in the world… aka french fries?!

My willpower around juicy burgers and hot, crispy french fries = zero.

So, what’s a girl who is trying to eat healthy but has a massive craving for a burger to do?

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May
07

Cranberry Pecan Quinoa Salad with Honey-Orange Dressing - light, lovely and so delicious!

I’ve been getting back into vinyassa yoga lately. Most of the time I do yoga sculpt classes with weights, but recently I’ve needed some deep stretching and some major stress relief. The mind-body connection that yoga brings me is often times my favorite part of the class; I’m more self-aware, compassionate, and thoughtful with each class. I’ve also noticed that my anxiety diminishes.

The other day my instructor was talking about how you have to be brave in order to become your true self. How you have to go beyond what you think you’re capable of if you want to make something happen. Take a chance on something or someone.

Little conversations like those push me to be better. I’m happy to have the ability to to make choices, change my future and create opportunities that I would have never thought possible. Thus on my journey to having a clear mind with less stress, I’m also focusing on having a healthy body. Eating clean, preparing my meals, and taking care of myself is so important.

Cranberry Pecan Quinoa Salad with Honey-Orange Dressing - light, lovely and so delicious!

This past weekend I made a big batch of this summery salad (with fall flavors?) My mom came over to help taste test, and she absolutely loved it. We enjoyed it cold served with some greek yogurt.

This salad was inspired by my favorite little meal at Whole Foods made with couscous. Every time I’m there I search for it.

Cranberry Pecan Quinoa Salad with Honey-Orange Dressing - light, lovely and so delicious!

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May
05

Blueberry Vanilla Buttermilk Greek Yogurt Pancakes - fluffy & tender pancakes!

Mother’s day is right around the corner. Each and every day I thank God how lucky I am to have a Mother who is kind, selfless, caring, and encouraging.

My mom lifts me up when I’m down, encourages me to always be the best person I can be, and absolutely loves me unconditionally. After my father passed away several years ago, my mom and I became inseparable. I’ve learned to keep the people you love close, let the little things go, and be appreciative of what you have.

Giving back to Mothers is such a hard thing to do. How can you give someone something who has given you everything? You really can’t. But making her pancakes is pretty close. They’re made with love after all.

Blueberry Vanilla Buttermilk Greek Yogurt Pancakes - fluffy & tender pancakes!

These pancakes are incredibly fluffy, moist, and absolutely melt in your mouth. And there’s actually TWO secret ingredients that keep them light, fluffy and tender:

Buttermilk: The tang and richness it brings to baked goods is undeniable. I promise you’ll notice the difference. It’s slightly acidic and so when mixed with baking powder, it will allow the pancakes to rise and keep them from breaking down. The result is a tender fluffy pancake that will leave you speechless – promise.

Greek Yogurt: Adding greek yogurt to pancakes makes them the holy grail of breakfasts, I swear. It helps to thicken up the batter, but still leaves you with the lightest pancake. Pretty magical.

Blueberry Vanilla Buttermilk Greek Yogurt Pancakes - fluffy & tender pancakes!

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Apr
17

Quick and easy gluten free oatmeal pancakes made in the blender! These healthy pancakes are topped with the most incredible creamy peanut butter maple syrup then finished with a sprinkle of sea salt.

Cinnamon Applesauce Oatmeal Pancakes with Salted Peanut Butter Maple Syrup

I’m on another one of my pancake kicks. This obsession is ridiculous.

But until I run out of pancake making ideas (and toppings), I’ll keep bringing them to you. Because really, who doesn’t love pancakes?

Cinnamon Applesauce Oatmeal Pancakes with Salted Peanut Butter Maple Syrup

In reality, I’ve been eating pancakes more than what should be considered normal.

What do I eat for breakfast? Pancakes, obviously. With blueberries to start the day out right.

Lunch? Ugh, guess I should do a salad to get some veggies in. Note: The entire time I’m thinking about breakfast and ways I can top my pancakes.

Dinner? PANCAKES ON MY MIND. Again. Wouldn’t you agree that breakfast for dinner never gets old?

Cinnamon Applesauce Oatmeal Pancakes with Salted Peanut Butter Maple Syrup

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Jan
12

A delicious vegan and gluten free kale detox salad with an incredible lemon dressing — you’ll make this again and again!

Today I want to tell you about one of my favorite salads. Yes, it’s a sort of ‘detox salad’.

My mom first made it for me for me three years ago. I adore the recipe for so many reasons: it’s fresh, bright, and flavorful. Plus you can add nearly anything to it to dress it up.

If you’ve never had kale before, this salad is perfect to start with!

The reason I call this a detox salad because not only is it vegan and gluten free, but it also has an incredible amount of good for you ingredients in it.

Side note: I’m watching Dawson’s Creek right now. Paceyyyyyyyy!

Sorry… back to the salad.

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Jan
08

Oven roasted green beans with garlic, parmesan cheese, and tomatoes – the perfect side dish!

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Green things! Finally, right?

For the last month, I ate way too much Mexican food, drank too many bottles of wine, and consumed wayyyy too much sugar. Talk about an overload. What I really need in my life (and maybe yours, too) is a little balance.

The good news is that work finally seems to be slowing down and I’m planning a couple of things including a blog redesign and a trip to Australia!

Yes, my boyfriend and I are headed down under for almost two weeks next month! Our trip starts in Sydney, then we’re road tripping from Brisbane to Byron Bay, then back through the Gold Coast, and finally ending in Brisbane for one of my darling friend’s wedding. She just sent me a picture of the bridesmaid’s dress and it’s beyond gorgeous!

Monique at Byron Bay

Even though I briefly lived in Australia and explored, I’m excited to head back and do some adventuring! Above is a picture of me at Byron Bay, the most eastern point of Australia; it was where I first learned to surf!

If you have any recommendations of things to do, see, or visit – please leave a comment or send me an email! I’d love to hear them!

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